Ben’s Week In Review: May 24

I’ll punch this out fast so I can get back to The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. :)

A Bloodborne expansion might get me back into that game

I don’t know if people realize this, but playing a game for fun and playing it for review purposes are two entirely different things.

Bloodborne is one game that demands your full attention, but a critic’s attention is different (at least for me). Rather than immersing myself in the experience, in the way I want, I’m trying to ascertain the game’s overall quality. So, I’m testing everything from basic gameplay mechanics to the narrative; as such, I have to keep pushing forward. I can’t really take my time and enjoy myself. This may sound ludicrous to those who haven’t acted as a critic but trust me, it’s common among reviewers. I really think it’s a big reason why I never finished Bloodborne, and why new content might encourage me to start a new adventure.

Sony says we’re getting an expansion and while we have to wait until later this year for info, at least we know it’s coming. And as this is a single-player-only experience, I have a feeling I might be intrigued by any extra content From Software creates. Of course, it depends on the timing. If I’m swamped again, starting a new Bloodborne game is out. But you never know…

Yes, the new DOOM is one of my most anticipated titles

Not only is it a legendary franchise and there’s a bit of nostalgia tied up in the IP, but I also love the combination of horror and shooter elements. That’s why DOOM III was actually one of my favorite games on Xbox 360.

And it’s also why I can’t wait for Bethesda to unveil the new DOOM project at E3. We got that brief teaser trailer and while it didn’t really show anything, it reminded me that I want it. I’ve long since tired of the standard military shooter and I’ve had my fill of the Borderlands games over the years. I just hope the developer retains the horror/shooter structure with the new DOOM; this is precisely what sets it apart. If it feels like a regular modern shooter with a heavy focus on multiplayer and a lame campaign, that’s going to be extremely disappointing. Guess I’ll just wait for the next Wolfenstein if that happens.

By the way, apologies on not delivering a review for Wolfenstein: The Old Blood. I know it’s just a little prequel but I really wanted to play it. Things got nuts.

Personal gaming update

Oh, I’m pretty sure you’re familiar. But if not, this one crushing bug ruined my game and I had to start over. As time goes on, more and more bugs start popping up; it seems like an endless train of complaints. And it does appear to affect the console versions most, perhaps the PlayStation 4 version most of all. Obviously, I’m past my initial pondering concerning a perfect 10 score; this game has no business getting a perfect score. It’s far too unstable and unreliable and yes, that’s a big part of any video game experience. I just have to determine how it will impact my score. I’ll have a better idea after I play more.

One quick postscript: BRAWL is a lot better than Bloober Team’s original failure known as Basement Crawl. It still has issues but it’s a passable Bomberman-type game and well worth owning if you’ve got some willing friends.

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All The Confirmed Games For E3 2015

E3 is just around the corner and as usual, it will be loaded with highly anticipated titles.

You can probably predict most of them and of course, perhaps the biggest news will come from surprises; i.e., games on tap that we don’t know about yet.

But for now, at least we’ve got a full list thanks to Latest News Explorer. Just be wary of the starred entries; they’re only games that are “likely” to appear; they’re not confirmed (i.e., Fallout 4, Borderlands 3, Titanfall 2, etc). Click the link to see the whole list but here are some of our favorites:

  • Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain
  • Doom
  • Mass Effect 4
  • Mirror’s Edge
  • No Man’s Sky
  • Kingdom Hearts III
  • Deus Ex: Mankind Divided
  • Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End
  • Gran Turismo 7
  • Assassin’s Creed Syndicate

Again, it’ll be the big announcements that will get the most attention, and here’s hoping Sony has a few up their sleeve. PlayStation 4 needs a more robust holiday lineup.

Tags: e3 2015, e3 2015 games, e3 video games, e3 game list

5/23/2015 11:03:50 AM Ben Dutka

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NES Celebrates 30 Years, Will Get Its Own Museum Exhibit

When you were just a young’un, sitting there playing the original Nintendo Entertainment System, could you have imagined that it would someday earn its own exhibit in a museum?

If you say “yes,” you’re lying.

And yet, it has happened. To celebrate the 30th anniversary of the legendary game console (it first hit store shelves in North American in 1985), video game museum The Strong has revealed that it will host a special exhibit dedicated to the system. It will go up later this year.

The Strong’s exhibit will be called “Playing with Power: 30 Years of the Nintendo Entertainment System” and it will debut at the Rochester, NY museum this fall. Attendees will learn more about the console’s development, and this will include previously unseen interviews with NES hardware designer Masayuki Uemura. And of course, you’ll be able to play some classic NES titles, like Super Mario Bros.

The exhibit is being jointly produced by The Strong and Ritsumeikan University in Kyoto, Japan, and the two groups will also share research projects and even staff. It’s part of a professional exchange program of sorts. Said Ritsumeikan University program chair Uemara:

“This partnership allows researchers and scholars in both the United States and Japan to learn from one another about how best to study and preserve the many contributions video games have had to our shared cultural heritage. Together, we can also help tell the story of the Japanese video game industry to guests of The Strong, beginning with the exhibit about the Nintendo Entertainment System this fall.”

All this from little ol’ Mario. Well, among other things. :)

Tags: nintendo, nes, nintendo museum, video game history

5/22/2015 9:06:28 PM John Shepard

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The Witcher 3: One Deadly Bug That Will End Your Game

Let me clarify a few points:

1. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is an amazing game. It really is.

2. I have no interest in bashing the developer because of what appears to be an isolated and very rare incident.

That being said, I think we all have to accept that CD Projekt Red’s game is simply too unstable and probably wasn’t ready to launch. I also have a responsibility to my fellow gamers; I want to warn them in case they encounter the same issue. Now, I haven’t been able to find evidence of this game-ending bug anywhere online (and trust me, I looked) and therefore, I have to assume I’m in the extreme minority.

Even so, if it can happen to me, I’m sure it can happen to someone else. Here’s the scenario:

After you kill the Griffin in White Orchard and claim your prize, you’re supposed to return to Vesemir and prepare to leave this opening introductory area. This is the last part of the Lilac and Gooseberries mission. What’s supposed to happen is that you’ll find Vesemir in the tavern, after which a brawl breaks out and you take off. The only reason I know this is because I had to look it up.

What happened to me is that after killing the Griffin, Vesemir is standing outside the tavern again. The main mission marker is right on him but he only repeats the same dialogue lines from before and nothing happens. Inside the tavern, it’s a strange scene. There are some bandits there; some standing, some sitting, and if you talk to them, they respond with shouts and yells that imply they’re in combat. Vesemir is still standing outside. And that’s it. The game is stuck.

Un-installing and re-installing the game data does nothing, and neither does returning to a previous save file (guess I didn’t have one that went back far enough). Now I have no choice; I have to start over. Word of warning: Before you talk to Vesemir to trigger the Griffin encounter, create a Manual Save and DON’T overwrite it after killing the Griffin. Maybe, if the game does break after, you can return to the save before the fight and try again. I don’t know; it’s just an idea.

This will delay my review indefinitely and I haven’t decided yet what sort of impact this incident should have on the score.

Related Game(s): The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

Tags: the witcher 3 wild hunt, the witcher 3 bugs, the witcher 3 crash

5/22/2015 8:50:54 PM Ben Dutka

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I’ll Wait For Rise Of The Tomb Raider Definitive Edition On PS4

Somebody asked me the other day if I planned on getting an Xbox One for Rise of the Tomb Raider. My response:

“LOL No. Just…no.”

He asked because I’m a big fan of the reboot (and I eventually want the Definitive Edition on PS4). However, here’s the thing: Rise of the Tomb Raider isn’t exclusive. It’s a timed exclusive. It means it’s coming to PlayStation 4 at some point. I may have to wait a year or longer but who cares? What, I don’t have anything else to play?

And besides, we all know that when the game does arrive on PS4, it will be the ultimate/definitive/whatever edition, loaded with all the previously released downloadable content and running at full 1080p (because thus far, Xbox One hasn’t often managed to hit that max resolution). Who knows what else it might include but I can pretty much guarantee it’ll be the superior version. I’m not so grossly impatient that I can’t wait.

Now, if a miracle occurred and Lost Odyssey 2 was announced exclusively for Xbox One, and we were assured it would retain the previous combat system and style, I’d get an Xbox One. Oh yes, I would. That’d be an exclusive game and one I know I’d have to play. Whenever Xbox One has such a thing, just let me know. And no, Halo 5: Guardians doesn’t count; I’m done with that series (played every single one and really, it was tired three installments ago).

Related Game(s): Rise of the Tomb Raider

Tags: tomb raider sequel, rise of the tomb raider, tomb raider ps4

5/22/2015 9:16:32 PM Ben Dutka

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F1 2015 Pushed Back, But We Get A Gorgeous Teaser

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Ultra Street Fighter IV Will Support PS3 FightSticks Now

Next week, you can enjoy the ultimate fighting experience…in more ways than one.

As revealed over at the PlayStation Blog, Ultra Street Fighter IV will launch digitally and exclusively for PlayStation 4 on May 26.

Furthermore, they’ve announced that while the game will of course support PS4 FightSticks, it will also support Lab Zero’s drivers, which means you can use licensed PS4 FightSticks as well. They also remind us that the game will run in beautiful 1080p/60fps glory, it’ll include all DLC released to this point, and all input lag is gone. Great news for all, yes?

And don’t forget that you get it all for only $24.99.

Related Game(s): Ultra Street Fighter IV

Tags: ultra street fighter iv, ultra sfiv, ultra street fighter iv ps4

5/22/2015 11:03:56 AM Ben Dutka

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New TV Ad Boasts: PS4 Is "World’s Most Powerful Console"

Make no bones about it: PlayStation 4 is the most powerful game machine on the planet.

At least, that’s what Sony UK says in a new PS4 TV ad, in which they call the system the “world’s most powerful console.”

It’s a slick new half-minute video that also puts the spotlight on some fantastic games, including Bloodborne, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, and the upcoming Batman: Arkham Knight. The narrators says “only on PS4″ but of course, the only title that qualifies for that statement is Bloodborne. Well, that’s okay; here in the US, I’ve seen ads for The Witcher 3 that make it look as if it’s only available on Xbox One.

Xbox One outsold the PS4 last month in North America but Sony’s console should still hold a significant lead; at last check, it had sold 22.3 million units worldwide.

Tags: ps4, playstation 4, sony, next gen, next generation

5/22/2015 10:13:18 AM Ben Dutka

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Game Of Thrones: Sons Of Winter Gets Launch Trailer

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New Patch For The Witcher 3 Will Fix That Crazy Small Text

Yes, it’s too damn small.

There are about a million items in the recently released open-world RPG, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. And for many playing on a TV, they have to move closer just to read the descriptions.

This has been a common complaint ever since the widely lauded game launched earlier this week. Thankfully, though, the developer is listening. As CD Projekt Red community boss Marcin Momot said on Twitter, in addition to the “600 fixes” the day-one patch delivered, the team is currently working on a patch to deal with the font size issue.

Those who have the game are well aware of the problem but if you haven’t embarked on this epic adventure yet, check out the picture here (via NeoGAF). Yeah, see?

Related Game(s): The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

Tags: the witcher 3 wild hunt, the witcher 3 tiny text, the witcher 3 small font

5/21/2015 9:20:38 PM Ben Dutka

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